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Tirtagangga Water Garden  

by on Monday, 15 January 20073 Comments | 10,250 views

Tirtagangga Water Garden is situated in the middle of rice fields around the natural springs of Rejasa, at Ababi village, Karangasem regency. It is about 83 km from Denpasar and 6 km from Amlapura to the north. Tirtagangga water gardens are composed mainly by water, gardens and sculptures. The name of this water garden comes from Tirta (holy water) and Gangga (Ganges). The late King of Karangasem, Anak Agung Anglurah Ketut Karangasem, built Tirtagangga water garden in 1948.

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This water garden was constructed in a unique mixture of Balinese, European, and Chinese architecture. Much of the structure of the palace was destroyed by the volcanic eruption of Gunung Agung in 1963; however, the famous bathing pools remain intact. The renovation of this beautiful water garden was initiated by the royal family of Karangasem and supported by the local government. By the end of 1985, the upper swimming pool was rehabilitated. Little by little, the water garden is coming into a better shape. Nowadays Tirtagangga is an important tourism destination in east Bali.

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Tirtagangga Water Garden scratches on a 1,2 Hectare (4 acres) area. The elegant eleven-tiered fountain in the middle of the complex and two large ponds will great the visitor after passing the entrance gate. On the higher northern level visitor can observe a spring under the banyan tree, the upper swimming pool and two decorative ponds, one of which contains four fountains reminiscent of Versailles. On the left side of the straight footpath running from the entrance to the west, is occupied by the big fishpond with a long island in the middle.

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Tirtagangga water garden is also the source of holy water for the nearby villages. Before the construction of the water garden, there was big spring water in this area. Therefore, people surrounding the area called this place ‘embukan‘ which means spring water. This spring water was then functioned to fulfill the people’s need of water and for the source of holy water for the ‘purification‘ of the God (Ida Betara). At certain celebration day, the people from the nearby villages will come in colorful processions with offerings, umbrellas, flags and other attributes. Led by their temple priest they hold ceremonies around the spring to ask for holy water.

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Tirtagangga not just offer the marvelous water garden to the visitors but also the beauty of the surrounding countryside. The visitors will not be able to turn away from the sea of rippling rice terraces with bursting coconut palms here and there, the distant sea with Bali’s biggest and most sacred mountain towering above.

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